India Current Affairs 2017

India Water Week inaugurated by President

President Ram Nath Kovind inaugurated 5th edition of India Water Week (IWW) with theme “Water and Energy for Inclusive Growth” in New Delhi.  About 1500 delegates from India and 13 other countries will attend five day international event.

The event will be celebrated with a multi-disciplinary conference and a concurrently running exhibition enriching theme and showcasing technologies and solutions available for areas under deliberation of the meet. The event will have many major components like water, food and energy security – essential requirement for sustainable development, water for inclusive growth, water and society and sustainable energy development – Key for all round economic growth.

Background

Government is organising India Water Week since 2012 as an annual international event on order to establish an international event focused on water resources of India. The first event was organised in New Delhi in 2012 with theme ‘Water, Energy and Food Security: Call for Solutions’. So far, four editions of India Water Week have been organised in 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2016. The recommendations and action points emerged during earlier events of India Water Week have been sent to all concerned Ministries of Central Government as well as all state governments for their appropriate implementation.

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MoRTH to promote new technologies in highway projects

The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has decided to implement “Value Engineering Program” to promote use of new technologies, materials and equipment in highways projects executed either under Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode or public funding mode.

Value Engineering Program

The objective of programme is to use innovative technology, materials and equipment to reduce cost of projects and make them more environment friendly. It also aims to ensure that roads or bridges and other assets get constructed much faster, are structurally stronger and more durable. It is expected to increase speed of construction, reduce construction cost, increase asset durability and improve aesthetics and safety.

National Panel of Experts (NPE)

The MoRTH also has reconstituted nine-member National Panel of Experts (NPE) for approving proposals for use of new technologies, material and equipment in highway sector. The reconstituted panel will be chaired by SR Tambe, former Secretary, PWD Maharashtra and co-chaired by Prof Ravi Sinha, IIT Mumbai.

Terms of Reference of NPE

The NPE will examine all technical matters involving new technologies, materials and equipment referred to it by concerned Engineers or contractors. It will also resolve technical issues which arise as result of difference in view between engineers and contractors regarding implementation of new and innovative technologies, materials and equipment.

It will also decide about need for field trials of any new or innovative technology, materials, equipment before its adoption and also finalize associated design approaches, construction methodologies as well as relevant specifications, guidelines, code so that contractor may use proposed new, alternative materials, technologies,  equipment in project highway.

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